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Content Marketing 101 (and how to write a kick ass blog post)

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Content Marketing 101 (and how to write a kick ass blog post)

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In recent years, content marketing has come to replace traditional marketing as the most effective method of achieving business objectives and driving sales. This presentation defines content marketing, describes how it works, and explores interesting examples of successful content marketing that push the boundaries of traditional marketing. The final section also includes some tips and strategies for writing compelling content.

In recent years, content marketing has come to replace traditional marketing as the most effective method of achieving business objectives and driving sales. This presentation defines content marketing, describes how it works, and explores interesting examples of successful content marketing that push the boundaries of traditional marketing. The final section also includes some tips and strategies for writing compelling content.

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Content Marketing 101 (and how to write a kick ass blog post)

  1. 1. Content Marketing 101 (and how to write a kick ass blog post)
  2. 2. Agenda • What is content marketing? • What is content? • What does content have to do with the customer? • What does content have to do with Cake & Arrow? • How do we create compelling content?
  3. 3. What is content marketing?
  4. 4. the art of providing relevant, useful content that people want to consume. Content Marketing is
  5. 5. “We need to stop interrupting what people are interested in and be what people are interested in.” CRAIG DAVIS, CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER AT J. WALTER THOMPSON
  6. 6. Traditional Marketing Interrupts Content Marketing Interests
  7. 7. Traditional Marketing is … • Brand centric • Self-promoting • Product/Service focused • Uninformative • Irrelevant • Intrusive
  8. 8. Content Marketing … • Customer centric • Provides value • Educates, interests, entertains and inspires • Connects with an audience’s values (emotional, cultural, political, personal). • Creates trust • Is aligned with audience’s interests • Aligns to the customer journey
  9. 9. • Brand awareness • Credibility • Connection • Lead Generation & Nurture • Customer Nurture • Recruitment What are the goals of content marketing?
  10. 10. All content should have a goal.
  11. 11. Content marketing does more than attract visitors. It nurtures them through the sales cycle.
  12. 12. 1 How it Works 1 2 3 4 Attract Visitors Share content with the audience you want to attract. Gather Info Use a call to action to get someone to fill out a form. Nurture the Lead Share relevant content with contact tailored to their interests. Close the Sale Use content to prove that you are the best option. 2 3 4
  13. 13. What is content?
  14. 14. CONFIDENTIAL “Relevant, compelling, timely and valued knowledge and/or entertainment.” DAVID ERICKSON FACEBOOK
  15. 15. CONFIDENTIAL content is more than just writing
  16. 16. OLIVIER BLANCHARD FACEBOOK The thing about the term “content” is that it’s just vague enough to mean everything and anything, which is to say it doesn’t mean anything at all. It’s essentially a word that means “stuff to fill an empty space with.” It could be photos, video, marketing copy, thorough analysis, poetry, farts, vacuous nonsense, cat hair or cheese cubes. The only thing it hints at is that there is a finite volume of the space it must fill. Ironically, the word itself is a vessel for more content: Here’s an empty word. Now fill it with meaning. “ 18 CONTENT CAN BE PRETTY MUCH ANYTHING
  17. 17. And can take many different forms •Case Studies •Infographics •Videos and Photos •White Papers •Tweets •Apps and Tools •Products •News •Blog Posts •Quizes •Emails •Memes •Webinars •Campaigns •Landing Pages •Microsites
  18. 18. Campaigns are often used for brand awareness and to create engagement around the brand. There is typically a social aspect involved. Coca Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign is an example of how content can create content can create content. The website, all of the advertising assets, and the product itself –the personalized Coke bottle – are all kinds of content that produce even more content in the form of social media posts etc. There will also be press releases, newspaper articles and other media that all fall under the umbrella of content. CAMPAIGNS Share a Coke Campaign
  19. 19. Microsites are typically interactive or personalized websites that stand a part from a brand’s website , allowing them to engage with their audiences on a specific issue or topic. Assess Your Risk is a Microsite created by the non-profit Bright Pink, which promotes breast and ovarian health in women. The interactive site guides women through a series of questions, culminating in a personalized risk assessment for breast and ovarian cancer, explaining how their answers were used to calculate risk. The site encourages women to take charge of their own health and tips for how they can stay cancer free. MICROSITES Bright Pink’s Assess Your Risk
  20. 20. White Papers provide brands an opportunity to dig deep into a specific issue that matters to their brand, and to offer their unique insights on the topic, often using their own research or experience. In March, Cake & Arrow published a white paper based upon primary research we conducted on the front end usability of Shopify Plus compared to Magento 2. The white paper provided us an opportunity to show off our research skills and to position ourselves as experts in ecommerce, and specifically in Shopify and Magento. WHITE PAPERS Shopify vs. Magento
  21. 21. Blog posts can serve many different functions. They can provide news on a topic, perspective on an issue, a recap of an event, or can provide a space to showcase your work or expertise. Blogs often times stand along side other content. For example, if you are conducting a webinar, you may use your blog to announce the webinar, or recap the webinar once it is over. If you have launched a campaign, you may use your blog to explain the campaign or share the campaign’s progress. BLOG POSTS News, Tips, Insights, POVs etc.
  22. 22. There are hundreds of different formats that a blog post can take. The most important thing to keep in mind is who you are writing for. Once you have figured that out, here are a few common formats to choose from.
  23. 23. A list pertaining to pretty much anything your heart desires. May easily cross over into some of the of the other genres, but a true listicle is hyper focused. In its purest form, it is not so much a list of recommendations, tips or pointers, as it is a “top 10” style list. BLOG GENRES The listicle
  24. 24. Discuss a tool you use in your work, or a new feature of an app you like, and talk about how you like it, relate back to specific examples from work or connect it to Cake & Arrow’s branding and positioning. BLOG GENRES A Product, Tool , or Feature Review
  25. 25. Discuss a book you recently read or choose a book that is popular in your field, read it, and review it. You could also choose a random book (fiction or otherwise) that is popular, and then relate it back to work/Cake & Arrow. You could also do the same with a movie. BLOG GENRES Book Review
  26. 26. Everyone is talking about (fill in the blank). Here’s my take. BLOG GENRES POV
  27. 27. Describe a journey you have been on and what you have learned. BLOG GENRES Personal Narrative
  28. 28. Describe how to do something. How to use Design Thinking to Plan Your Wedding, How to Get Your Clients to Trust You, How Create a Project Plan that Kills it Every Time - you get the idea. BLOG GENRES The How-to
  29. 29. Similar to the POV, discuss a current trend, and tell us what you think about it or how it relates to what you or we as a company do. BLOG GENRES The Trend Piece
  30. 30. This can be a popular TV show, a character in a book, a book itself, or a movie. Pick any of these and relate it back to yourself, Cake & Arrow, or your work. BLOG GENRES The Cultural Connection
  31. 31. Do a write up of an event you went to, a class you took, or something fun you did. If it doesn’t already, relate it back to work or C&A somehow. BLOG GENRES The Write Up
  32. 32. What does content have to do with customers?
  33. 33. No matter what kind of content you are creating, it should always be in the service of customers.
  34. 34. Thinking about who your audience is for a specific piece of content is perhaps the most critical thing to keep in mind as you are creating content. This will help you not only create content that is interesting to the people we are targeting, but will help you monitor your tone of voice when writing. MAPPING CONTENT TO CUSTOMER PERSONAS All content should be written with a specific audience in mind
  35. 35. C&A Personas Melissa Marketing CMO at a midsize retail or ecommerce company. Margaret Marketing CMO or VP at a fortune 500 insurance or financial services company Frank Finance CFO or VP of a line of a business at a fortune 500 financial services company Emily Employee A potential employee of C&A. A designer, project manager, etc. Denis Digital A CX or Digital Innovation exec at a fortune 1000 company Seth Smallbusiness The owner of a small retail or ecommerce company who plays all C- level roles within the company. These are examples of the types of people we might be targeting. There are surely many more personas to be added to this list.
  36. 36. Whether it is a webinar, a white paper, or a blog post, in addition to being mapped to a specific persona, all content should be mapped to the customer journey and be used with the express purpose of nurturing customers along this journey toward a sale. MAPPING CONTENT TO THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY Understanding the Stages of the Journey Awareness Consideration Decision Customers in the awareness stage are looking for answers, or just or something interesting to read or to look at. The awareness stage is about answering questions, educating, capturing attention, and inspiring customers to pay attention and to want to learn more about you. Customers in the consideration stage know who you are, a bit about what you are about, and are ready to learn more. Content in this stage should be about building credibility. Show them that you care about the same things they care about and that you are capable, knowledgeable, and have an interesting take on solving problems that matter to them. Customers in the decision phase are sold on you– or just about. They like what you do, they know they have a need, and now are looking to make the next step in order to fill it. This is pretty much the only brand-specific content you will have. It may include case studies and testimonials or statistics about customer satisfaction etc.
  37. 37. Awareness Blog Posts Campaigns Microsites Webinars White Papers E-books Decision Case Studies Testimonials How-to guides Emails Consideration Blog Posts Webinars White Papers E-books What types of content belong in each phase?
  38. 38. Awareness DecisionConsideration Here are some examples of our content, and how it maps to the different phases in the journey.
  39. 39. What does content have to do with Cake & Arrow?
  40. 40. While content always exists for the customer, and for the most part we don’t want our content to be brand centric, content does need to map to our values and who we are as a company.
  41. 41. Personality 
 Brand Traits The Morgan Freemans
 (our values)+
  42. 42. Personality Brand Traits Resourceful Noble EmpatheticRigorous Eccentric As a collective group, these represent who we are at our core. They are our innate set of traits.
  43. 43. Our values are the expression of who we are. It’s the framework for how we behave. The Morgan Freemans (Core Values) Merry 
 Craftsman Forever a WIP Killer
 Work Entrepreneur 
 At Heart This Place 
 Is Mine
  44. 44. So how do we create compelling cotent?
  45. 45. Long before you begin writing, you’ll need to do some work to figure out what you are going to write about. Here are some questions you can ask yourself. Once you pick a general topic, spend a few minutes free writing about the topic and even doing a bit of research to see if it has legs. Deciding what to write about. • What do I know a lot about? • What do I care a lot about? Causes? People? Interests? • What do I want to know more about? • Is there anything I want to learn how to do? • What am I excited about at work right now? • What have I been reading or watching? • What is happening in the news right now? • Are there any new developments in my field or in our industry? • What other content have I read recently that intrigued me? • What have our clients been talking about lately or asking me about lately? • What have I been talking about with my colleagues lately? • What I am obsessed with outside of work? • What have I been struggling with at work? • What keeps me up at night? • What do my clients care about? • What do my colleagues care about? • What are people talking about on Twitter? • What are the people I follow talking about?
  46. 46. Write about what you know Write about what you want to know more about Write about what you love Deciding what to write about.
  47. 47. It’s not enough that you care about this topic, others need to care about it too. Take a look at some of the personas, and consider who your best audience might be. Think about how you might need to adjust your Identifying your audience. Melissa Marketing CMO at a midsize retail or ecommerce company. Margaret Marketing CMO or VP at a fortune 500 insurance or financial services company Emily Employee A potential employee of C&A. A designer, project manager, etc. Denis Digital A CX or Digital Innovation exec at a fortune 1000 company Frank Finance CFO or VP of a line of a business at a fortune 500 financial services company Seth Smallbusiness The owner of a small retail or ecommerce company who plays all C- level roles within the company.
  48. 48. Is your blog intended to raise awareness and to generate interest? Or is it more about educating the customer about our business processes and how we work? As a general rule, the more the content has to do with C&A, the further along the customer journey it will fall. Identifying the phase of the customer journey. Awareness Decision Consideration High level, high interest, general interest, not brand specific. Digs deeper, explores processes, methodologies, POVs on issues pertaining to work. Educates and informs and aligns our interest, value and work ethic with the customers. Brand specific. Proves that we are the right choice and that we will make the project successful.
  49. 49. Once you know what you are going to write about, who your are writing for, and what phase they are in in the journey, you are ready to determine the goal. Remember the goals from the beginning of the presentation and get more specific. Whats your blog post trying to do? Determining the goal of your content. • Brand awareness • Credibility • Connection What is your blog posts’s goal? • Lead Generation • Customer Nurture • Recruitment
  50. 50. When it comes to values, try owning one of the Morgans. Which one will you be when writing your blog post? On the spectrum of personality traits, think about where your topic falls. It it’s heavily focused on customer-centricity, maybe it’s empathy. If it’s describing a research regimen, maybe its rigorous. It may very well be more than one. Connecting it to our values and personality. Resourceful Noble Empathetic Rigorous Eccentric Merry Craftsman Forever a WIP This Place is Mine Entrepreneur at Heart Killer Work
  51. 51. No matter what you are writing about, it is always a good idea to see what other people have had to say about the topic. This may provide some inspiration, will definitely educate you, and will also help you develop a unique POV. Do some google searches, check out your favorite blogs, read the news, and make a list of sources and citations you may want to use in your article. Doing your research.
  52. 52. Now you are ready to start writing.
  53. 53. Even if you don’t stick to it, an outline will help you get started. Always start with an outline. Introduction ¶1: Lead or Hook ¶2: Nutgraph (Transition) Body ¶3:Idea 1 ¶4: Example 1 ¶5:Idea 2 ¶6: Example 2 ¶7:Idea 3 ¶8: Example 3 Conclusion ¶9:Sum it up. Give some advice. Call to action. ¶10: Kicker
  54. 54. If you are stuck, considering writing out what you want to say in bullet points first.
  55. 55. Or save your introduction for last and skip to what you know you want to say.
  56. 56. Or talk it through with someone.
  57. 57. And be sure that every point you make is connected to an example from work (ie. case study), and example from your life, or a piece of research (ie an article etc.).
  58. 58. First AND last impressions matter. Spend as much time on your conclusion as you do on your intro. •Ask an interesting question •End with an anecdote that illustrates your point •End with a quote •Make a joke •End with a surprise •Close with some good advice
  59. 59. CONFIDENTIAL And yet it is this cosmopolitan transit—the sharing of tastes and expectations across a single world, from Down Under to Dumbo—that the enemies of avocado toast seek to quash. Problems arise as the world’s variety blurs toward a vast consumer mainstream: lattes in every café, Adidas workout pants on every subway car. But there’s refreshing opportunity for generative collaboration, too. Jet-lagged in London, a few weeks ago, I dipped into a café for lunch. The menu included a ragù (too much for my displaced stomach), some inscrutable sandwiches (probably containing mayonnaise and raisins), and then, on the specials board, “smashed avo on toast.” The dish had a regional flourish: rocket, feta, and a cocktail-like wedge of lime. It looked delicious. I ordered it, ate it, and went to do my business in a city that was not my own. It felt like home. NATHAN HELLER, THE NEW YORKER, JULY 13 2017 “A GRAND, UNIFIED THEORY OF AVOCADO TOAST” An Anecdote
  60. 60. CONFIDENTIAL According to Fadell, this is largely a matter of unintended consequences–but that doesn’t free designers and developers from responsibility. Fadell wants there to be a Hippocratic oath for designers, where they pledge to work ethically and “do no harm.” “I think we have to be very cognizant of the unintended consequences, but also acknowledge them and then design them out– make sure that we are ethically designing,” he says. “This is the slowest technology will ever progress ever again in your life. It’s only speeding up. So what are we going to do as designers to bring that element in all the time?” KATHARINE SCHWAB, FASTCO, JULY 7 2017 “NEST FOUNDER: ‘I WAKE UP IN COLD SWEATS THINKING, WHAT DID WE BRING TO THE WORLD?’” A Quote
  61. 61. CONFIDENTIAL A Surpise KATE MUTH, CAKE & ARROW, MAY 3, 2017 “NAVIGATING THE TRANSITION TO WORKING PARENT”
  62. 62. Once you have finished a draft, use this checklist to make sure you have everything you need before sending it off for feedback. Covering your bases. Does my blog have a clear goal? Does my blog have a clear, interesting topic that communicates something unique from what others are saying? Is my blog post written for a specific audience/ persona? Does my blog post map to the customer journey? Does my blog post connect to Cake & Arrow values and brand identity? Is my blog post to brand centric? Does my blog post have a strong introduction and conclusion? Is my blog post supported by real life examples and research? Does my blog post have a call to action? Blog Post Check List
  63. 63. Plan RewriteWrite Remember that Writing is a Three Step Process
  64. 64. Once you have a draft, share it. Getting feedback—and then rewriting—is one of the most important parts of the process.
  65. 65. Thank You. 67

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